Featuring lightened-up classics, new twists and smart ingredient swaps, you'll want to warm up with one of these healthy comfort food recipes around the dinner table tonight.
Chicken Pot Pie Soup1 of 10
This take on chicken pot pie does away with the crust while keeping all of the warming comfort.
Add chicken, onion, celery, carrots, garlic, spices and chicken broth to a slow cooker and stir to combine. Add the bay leaf, cover and cook on low for five hours or until chicken is cooked through and veggies are tender. Remove the bay leaf. Remove the chicken and shred, setting aside. Measure out two cups of the soup liquid and puree in a blender until smooth, then return to the slow cooker. Return shredded chicken to the slow cooker, and add frozen peas, onions and light cream (if desired). Warm for an additional 30 minutes.
Chicken Tikka Masala2 of 10
A favorite Indian meal, this mildly spicy dish with a healthy twist will be a hit in your home.
- 2 tsp. olive oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1 jalapeño, seeded and diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp. freshly grated ginger
- 1 small can tomato puree
- 1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
- 1 tbsp. Garam Masala spice blend
- 1 tsp. paprika
- 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
- 1/2 tsp. ground turmeric
- 1/2 tsp. curry powder
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 3/4 cup light coconut milk
- Greek yogurt and chopped cilantro, for garnish
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion, jalapeno and garlic and sauté for five minutes or until onions are golden. Place in slow cooker, along with tomato puree, lemon juice, Garam Masala, paprika, cayenne pepper, turmeric and curry powder. Stir to combine, add chicken breasts and toss to cover with sauce. Cover and cook on low for seven hours. Remove chicken, shred and add back to the slow cooker. Stir in coconut milk and continue to cook on high, uncovered for about 20 more minutes. Serve over rice and garnish with Greek yogurt and cilantro, if desired.
Chicken Tacos3 of 10
Throw this recipe into the slow cooker on Taco Tuesday or any other night you need a quick, healthy dinner.
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 5 cloves garlic, smashed
- 1 tbsp. ground cumin
- 2 tbsp. chili powder
- 1 tbsp. paprika
- 2 tsp. salt
- 2 bay leaves
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 12 corn tortillas, warmed
- Guacamole, salsa, limes and chopped cilantro
Place stock, garlic, spices, salt and bay leaves into a slow cooker and stir to combine. Add chicken breasts, cover and cook on low for five hours or until chicken is cooked through and tender. Transfer chicken to cutting board and shred. Divide the meat evenly between the tortillas and top as desired.
Zoodles & Meatballs4 of 10
Zucchini noodles–a.k.a. zoodles–are a delicious substitute for traditional pasta, and most grocery stores now carry a pre-packaged version.
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 1/2 yellow onion, finely diced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 3 cups marinara sauce
- 1 lb. frozen, pre-cooked meatballs (turkey or lean beef)
- 6 medium zucchini or 1-2 packages prepared zucchini noodles
- Parmesan cheese
Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, salt and pepper and sauté for five minutes. Add the marinara sauce and meatballs, stirring to combine. Simmer and stir occasionally until the meatballs are heated through and sauce is slightly thickened (about 15 minutes). Spiralize zucchini (or open prepared Zoodles) and add to the pan. Simmer for an additional five minutes and serve topped with cheese.
Chicken Noodle Soup5 of 10
This healthy homemade soup is created with ingredients that will boost your health, instead of canned, processed versions.
- 2 chicken breasts
- 2 chicken drumsticks, with skin
- 1 yellow onion, peeled and quartered
- 1 head of garlic, halved
- 6 carrots, diced
- 6 celery stalks, diced
- 1 parsnip, diced
- 1 bunch fresh parsley
- bunch fresh thyme
- 3 chicken bouillon cubes
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tbsp. black peppercorns
- 2 tbsp. Kosher salt
- 6 oz. wide noodles
Add chicken, onion, garlic, carrots, celery and parsnip to a large soup pot. Tie parsley and thyme into a bundle with kitchen string and add to the pot. Cover with cold water to reach about two inches above the mixture (about 10 to 14 cups). Add bouillon cubes, bay leaves, peppercorns and salt. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer, cooking uncovered for about 90 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate to cool and remove and reserve veggies. Strain the broth, add veggies back and return to a simmer. Add noodles and cook for eight minutes or until tender. Shred the chicken, add back to pot and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Skinny Sloppy Joes6 of 10
This version of a childhood favorite incorporates a healthy dose of veggies while bringing back familiar flavors.
- 1 tsp. olive oil
- 1 white onion, diced
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 lb. lean ground turkey
- Salt and pepper
- 1/2 cup ketchup
- 1/4 cup barbeque sauce
- 1/2 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 tbsp. red wine vinegar
- 1 tsp. yellow mustard
- Whole wheat buns
- Monterrey Jack cheese and pickles, for garnish
Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic, onion and bell pepper and sauté for five minutes. Transfer veggie mixture to a bowl. Cook ground turkey in same pan until browned and season with salt and pepper. Return veggie mixture to the skillet, and add ketchup, barbeque sauce, Worcestershire sauce, vinegar and mustard. Stir to combine and simmer for 10 more minutes. Serve on buns with cheese and pickles, if desired.
Sweet Potato Fries with Greek Yogurt Dip7 of 10
It's hard to say "no" to this delicious and nutritious pair.
- 2 large sweet potatoes, cut into wedges
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 tbsp. chili powder
- 1/2 tsp. cumin
- 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
- 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 2 tbsp. canned chipotle peppers, chopped
- 1 tsp. fresh lime juice
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Toss sweet potatoes with oil and spices and roast for 30 minutes, turning halfway through cooking time. Combine dip ingredients in a small bowl and serve chilled with warm fries.
Baked Apples8 of 10
This classic fall treat is easy to create healthfully. The secret? Less sugar, more flavor!
- 8 medium apples, cored and quartered
- 2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp. sugar
- 2 tbsp. lemon juice
- 2 tsp. cinnamon
- Frozen Yogurt
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Toss all ingredients and place in a baking dish. Roast for 45 minutes, tossing again halfway through. Serve topped with frozen yogurt, if desired.
Celebration Cake9 of 10
Cake is a delicious rite of passage on birthdays, anniversaries and more. Here's a version that offers all the delicious celebration with none of the guilt.
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3 tsp. baking powder
- 1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1 1/3 cup grated carrots
- 1 cup grated zucchini
- 1 cup finely grated golden beets
- 3/4 cup chopped walnuts
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 1 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
- 2/3 cup canola oil
- 4 eggs
- 2 cups fresh goat cheese, at room temperature
- 6 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 cup maple syrup
- 1/2 cup nuts or fresh berries, for garnish
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease two 9" x 2" cake pans, dust with flour and line with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. In a separate bowl, stir together carrots, zucchini, beets, nuts and raisins. In a third, larger bowl, beat maple syrup and oil together, then add eggs one at a time. Beat until smooth. Add dry mixture to wet mixture in batches, mixing after each addition until smooth. Mix in veggies. Divide the batter between the two baking pans, place pans on a rack in the center of the oven and bake for 25 to 35 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
While cakes cool, make the frosting. Beat the cheeses together until light and fluffy, add powdered sugar and continue beating until well blended. Lastly, beat in maple syrup. Chill frosting for about 30 minutes until firm, then frost cake and garnish with nuts or berries, if desired.